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Just announced: Tír na NÓg, 20th September.

Tír na NÓg

20 September / 19:00 / More Info / Tickets on sale 9am, Wednesday

Tír na nÓg (translated as ‘land of eternal youth’) are considered one of the first progressive folk bands with other artists like Nick Drake or groups like Pentangle. Whether categorised as alt folk, prog folk, psych folk, or even space folk, what is not in doubt is that they are two of the most original and influential songwriters and performers Ireland has ever produced. Tír na nÓg are a union of equals. Their guitars wind and mesh gorgeously together, their voices likewise; nor can they be separated for the quality of their songwriting. Songs like Condell’s ‘Our Love Will Not Decay’, ‘Eyelids Into Snow’ and ‘Two White Horses’, and O’Kelly’s ‘Piccadilly’, ‘So Freely’ and ‘Looking Up’ are as good as anything Ireland’s produced in the past four decades.

They were signed to Chrysalis Records in May ’70 within days of arriving in London, suitcases and guitars in hand. Tír na nÓg recorded three timeless albums for the label, recently re-issued by Cherry Red / Esoteric Records. John Peel championed the duo from the start, recording many Peel Sessions with them. They toured with bands as disparate as Fairport Convention, Steeleye Span, Jethro Tull, Procol Harum, The Who and Roxy Music in the 70s, as well as headlining their own theatre, college and club gigs, garnering a large cult following.

In 1974 Leo and Sonny returned to Ireland and they went their separate ways. Fortunately, Tír na nÓg resurfaced in 1985 with occasional shows on home soil, together with very rare visits to the UK. In 2010 a brief ’2 gigs and a festival’ tour triggered the decision to return more often – and this is what they’ve been doing! Fans of old are reliving the songs from the early days and marvelling at the newer introductions whilst newer fans admire, for the first time, the musicianship and pedigree of this duo.

Four decades on and their songs have not aged. Tír na nÓg truly reflect the ‘land of eternal youth’.

‘..a remarkable band…. they deliver a stunning performance that underlines their reputation as being well founded…… the crowd utterly entranced.’ (Prog)

‘Otherworldly and indubitably wise.’ (Uncut)

‘Tir na nOg blew me away – that mix of Irishness, folk and Led Zeppelin.’ (Mojo Magazine)

‘Sonny Condell and Leo O’Kelly continue to defy real time.’ (Irish Times)

Just announced: The Blockheads, 10th July.

The Blockheads

10 July / 19:30 / More Info / Tickets on sale 9am, Wednesday

Sex, drugs & rock ‘n’ roll! The Blockheads are back!

The new wave funk and rock and roll outfit originally fronted by the late Ian Dury, play Band on the Wall.

Originally formed in 1977 to promote Ian Durys’ album 'New Boots and Panties' on the first Stiff Records tour of the UK, Chaz Jankel, Norman Watt-Roy, Charlie Charles, John Turnbull and Mick Gallagher became known as 'The Blockheads'. In 1978, they released 'What a Waste', which reached number five in the U.K. charts. They were then joined by saxophonist Davey Payne and toured the USA, supporting Lou Reed across North America and ending with their own dates in California. Chaz composed 'Hit me with your Rhythm Stick' with Ian, and, in 1979, had a number one hit record with it in the U.K. They went on to record the ‘Do it Yourself’ album, which featuring hit single ‘Reasons to be Cheerful, Part 3’.

In 1980, Wilko Johnson joined to record and release a third album called 'Laughter' and released 'I Want to be Straight' and 'Supermans Big Sister' as singles. They toured throughout 1981 in the UK and Europe, ending the year with a tour of Australia.

In 1982 Ian Dury & The Blockheads disbanded and were not to play together again until 1987 when they went out to Japan to play three shows, disbanding again until 1990 when  band recorded a live album ‘Warts & Audience' at the Brixton Academy in December 1990. In March 1996, Ian was diagnosed with cancer and, after recovering from an operation, was determined to write another album. To this end, The Blockheads went into rehearsal in August 1996 and began recording. The album 'Mr. Lovepants' was released in 1998 and in May, Ian & The Blockheads hit the road again.

The band, now including Dylan Howe and Gilard Atzmon, continued to play gigs throughout 1999. The last performance by Ian Dury & The Blockheads was February 6th 2000 at The London Palladium. Ian died at 9am on 27th March 2000. At this point, the band had to make a decision to either stop or continue. The choice was made and the band have continued making albums and touring the world. Now after nearly a decade since Ian passed away, The Blockheads still perform to packed out venues around the world.

Now, after over thirty years, The Blockheads are still building their wall of sound, and it just gets bigger and better.

Just announced: Nearly Dan, 13th June.

Nearly Dan

13 June / 19:30 / More Info / Buy Tickets

In the summer of 1970, Denny Dias placed an advert in the Village Voice which read ‘Bass and keyboard player required, must have jazz chops. No assholes need apply.’

From this simple, poignant entry in the music press, a superior band was born. The rest is, as they say, history.

It’s a bit like that with Nearly Dan. When Gary Davies first heard the recordings of the ‘jazz chops / no assholes’ group called Steely Dan he was struck. He taught himself keyboards, and began a love affair with the group.

Nearly Dan are well crafted, honed and with that natural understanding that doesn’t come from adulation, but from something deeper.

This is no ordinary tribute band. They know Steely Dan fans don’t want that. You want intricacy, you want dedication and you want loyalty. With Nearly Dan you get that. The 10-piece Nearly Dan play Steely Dan with a remarkably similar in spirit as well as sound. Less tribute and more homage, Nearly Dan is saviour to the growing legions of Steely Dan fans.

Just announced: Influence presents DJs Jon Da Silva & Greg Fenton, 3rd May.

Influence presents DJs Jon Da Silva & Greg Fenton

03 May / 22:00 / More Info / Buy Tickets

Influence presents Jon Da Silva & Greg Fenton, two DJs who have indisputably helped shape the music scene in Manchester for over 20 years and some of the biggest DJs in the world.

Jon Da Silva

Where do you start? How about with a quote from one of the biggest dance DJs in the world, Sasha?

“Jon to me was the most influential DJ in my career really. He showed me the way not only did he give me my first breaks he taught me how to build proper DJ sets. I used to go watch him play from 9pm and follow the whole night. He was so ahead of the game, the way he crafted his dj sets was mind blowing. I don’t think there's another more influential person in my career."

Mercurial DJ / Producer, Jon Da Silva was co conspirator in defining the music policy of the seminal House club The Hacienda during the acid house era and was slap bang at the centre of the early days of UK House / Techno music scene; at HOT with Mike Pickering, where he embraced to Chicago house scene and brought it to our dance floor in Manchester mixing it with his own unique style, at Dry Bar, which became a go-to place because of his individual style on the decks, and at the other Manchester favourite, Space Funk with Greg Fenton, which we resurrect for one night only!

Greg Fenton

Greg Fenton is one of the key Manchester DJs and a renowned producer, whose love of music is reflected in his mix of records. DJing for the last 30 years, he made his name in the clubs of Manchester, holding residencies with the likes of Mike Pickering (Circus), Jon Da Silva (Space Funk), and Justin Robertson (Spice / Konspiracy / Most Excellent at Venus).

Greg's choice of music has also supplied the soundtrack for many of Manchester's late-night bars including Prague V, One Central Street and Barca. Prior to this, Greg was resident for 2 years at Factory Records’ flagship bar Dry 201, which resulted in a Saturday night residency at the world renowned Hacienda. Cited as an influence by artists such as The Chemical Brothers, he has has truly cemented his name in Manchester as a true DJ legend.

So! On Sunday Bank Holiday 3rd May 2015, these two iconic DJs get their dues as we celebrate their influence on the Manchester dance scene and resurrect the Space Funk Sessions. They are backed up by one of our most talented up coming DJs in Manchester right now, Black Rose, this is an the event not to be missed!

Just announced: On Yer Mic! ft. Ben Mellor, Batz Inda Belfry, Caveman and DJ Cutterz, 2nd April.

On Yer Mic! ft. Ben Mellor, Batz Inda Belfry, Caveman and DJ Cutterz

02 April / 20:00 / More Info / Buy Tickets

On Yer Mic is Band on the Wall’s celebration of words and performance. Kicking off the bank holiday weekend, BBC national slam champion and beatboxer Ben Mellor brings his hip hop inflected poetic styling to the stage. Also performing are Batz Inda Belfry (CityLife’s  Best Breakthrough Artist 2014)Having seen airplay on radio 1 and unity, as well as vocal support from artists like Tinie Tempah, Batz are tipped as ones to watch in 2015. Hosting and performing on the night is Cave Man, and Room 2 records/ Voodoo Black representative DJ Cutterz will be manning the decks throughout the evening.

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